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HBC Ramps Up Technology to Accelerate Orders

Canada’s oldest retailer, Hudson Bay Company is betting big on technology.

In an article published by The Canadian Press*, a press conference unveiling the new technology with CEO Jerry Storch said it was like moving on from “an abacus to a MacBook Pro.”

Using a “Perfect Pick” robotic system, an item purchased online is located in the warehouse in less than 30 seconds, and packed into a box, ready for mailing.

It is the first time the Perfect Pick system has been used in Canada, which operates 300 robots to store and retrieve products from bins the size of a recycling blue box.

About 2/3 of the 725,000-square foot distribution centre has been converted to use the system.

CEO Storch said the company wants to meet customers’ needs, whether they want to shop in store or online.
“I don’t believe it’s a leap of faith,” he said. “It’s a strong statement of confidence in the future.”

Retail experts state it is the right move for a retailer like Hudson’s Bay, who has made a substantially investment in technology to set them apart from other bricks and clicks rivals.

Speed is critically important to online shoppers, especially in winning over e-commerce for the younger generations.

Hudson’s Bay saw an increase in its online sales in its latest quarter. For the period ending July 30, the company reported that its total digital sales across all banners jumped by 84.4 per cent from the prior year.

Storch said the retailer is looking at expanding the technologies to its other three warehouses in Toronto and Vancouver, and is also considering offering same-day delivery for some markets now that it has the capacity to fill that demand.

“Nobody, nobody, will beat Hudson’s Bay on the Internet,” he told a group of investors at the launch.

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Source: Canadian Press
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